Roger Ross Williams is an award-winning director, producer, writer, and the first African-American director to win an Academy Award®, for his short film Music By Prudence. Williams’ work pushes the boundaries of culture and film. His documentaries include Academy Award®-nominated and Emmy Award®-winning Life, Animated, as well as God Loves Uganda, American Jail, and VR experience Traveling While Black. Currently Williams is working on his first narrative feature for Amazon studios.
Andrew Rossi is the Emmy-nominated director and producer of documentary films including Page One: Inside The New York Times (2011), following the inner working of the New York Times media desk; Ivory Tower (2014), about the challenges facing higher education; A Table In Heaven (2008), following the Italian family behind Le Cirque restaurant; Bronx Gothic (2017) about performance artist Okwui Okpokwasili; and The First Monday In May (2016) about the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute. Through his New York based production company Abstract, Andrew also produces content for film and television .
Kate Novack is an Emmy®-nominated documentary filmmaker. Kate was a producer and writer of Page One: Inside the New York Times, which followed journalists on the paper's media beat during one transformational year in journalism. Kate was a producer on the HBO documentary Le Cirque: A Table in Heaven, about the family that owns the legendary French restaurant in New York. She has worked as a story consultant on several films, including CNN's Ivory Tower, on the student-loan debt crisis, and First Monday In May, an inside look at the Metropolitan Museum's Costume Institute exhibition and annual Gala. Prior to making films, Kate was an arts and media reporter at Time Magazine.
Roger Ross Williams is the first African American director to win an Academy Award with his short film Music By Prudence. Williams has directed a variety of acclaimed films including God Loves Uganda, which was short listed for an Academy Award and the 2017 Academy Award-nominated film Life, Animated. Williams is on the Board of Governors for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences representing the Documentary branch and is the chair of the Diversity Committee. He serves on the Advisory Boards of the Sundance Institute and the Full Frame Film Festival and is on the Board of the Tribeca Film Institute.
André Leon Talley is the former Vogue magazine editor-at-large and one of the fashion industry’s and New York culture's most influential icons. Beginning his career at Andy Warhol’s Factory in the 1970s before climbing the ranks of the New York fashion editorial world, Talley made a lasting impact by pushing to include African-American models and designers in such major publications as Women’s Wear Daily, W, and Vogue magazine. Today, his judgment is sought by top designers, stylists, and celebrity clientele.
Sandra Bernhard is an award-winning performer, actress, singer, and author. She is the host of the hugely popular Sandyland, her daily radio show on SiriusXM, now going into its third year, for which she won a Gracie Award. Bernhard is a pioneer of the one-woman show and her latest piece “Sandemonium” is currently being toured around the country. In addition to theater, Bernhard has extensive film and television credits which include The King of Comedy, Track 29, Hudson Hawk, Dinner Rush, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Broad City, Will & Grace, The Sopranos, Roseanne, and many others.
Josh Braun is the co-president of Submarine, a hybrid sales and production company. Recent films include Three Identitical Strangers, Shirkers, Crime + Punishment, The Final Year, Dina, Chasing Coral, Whose Streets, Trophy, Nobody Speak, Weiner, Life Animated, The Wolfpack, Citizenfour, Best of Enemies, Blackfish, 20 Feet from Stardom, Searching for Sugar Man and many others. Documentaries produced by Mr. Braun include Burden, Rats, Page One Inside the NY Times, The Unknown Known and Easy Riders Raging Bulls. Mr. Braun was an executive producer on David Cronenberg’s A History of Violence, and produced the cult horror hit House of the Devil.